The month of October always reminds me of so many things: pumpkins, fall foliage, homecoming games, apple cider, candy corn, Harvest Ingathering, corn mazes, orchards, scary movies, hay rides and caramel apples to name a few (Ok…A LOT!). This last item also reminds me of one more thing that is associated with this time of year: Halloween.
This particular holiday has some controversial agendas, but this particular trick-or-treater would probably still be on the outside-looking-in of faith in Christ if it were not for a friend’s once-a-year invite to his particular congregation’s annual harvest party. In other words, respectfully conscious of other’s thoughts and opinions, I enjoy this particular opportunity every year to remind myself and others about the Apostle Paul’s following words: “And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light.” 2 Corinthians 11:14
Paul’s second letter to the Church at Corinth contained the above statement as he was attempting to warn the followers about being “…deceived by the serpent’s cunning…” and being “…led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ.” The Apostle realized that “…just like Eve…” the Corinthians were being fooled by the original liar. Jesus had this to say regarding the Devil’s masquerading ability and proficiency: “When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.” John 8:44b
This brings us back to our caramel apple. Did you know that Satan pretends to be like this delectable treat, but with one BIG difference? That old Serpent wants us to think he is offering us a treat, but really it is nothing but a trick. His offering is actually a caramel onion masquerading as its similar-looking counterpart.
This brings me full-circle and finally to our title. Several years ago, a well-meaning deacon in a congregation I served within was fooled in the same “caramel onion” manner. After we watched a film to conclude our study series on The Devil and His Demons, this man came to me with the following response, “I sure hope that none of my offering went to pay for that!” Just as I was about to reply, another leader at this assembly quickly intervened and made the most inspiring comeback conceivable, “Don’t worry. I am positive that your donation went towards the electric bill!”
That disarming retort has always reminded me to watch out for Satan’s masquerade and remember that our investments are not to just “keep the lights burning,” but to show The Light of eternal significance to those lost in the liar’s tricks.